7 months ago

Comfortable Madness First PDF 4-13-18

Animal noises ripped out

Animal noises ripped out my throat. Spinning and kicking, I went beast crazy. He held tight, so I rushed in and bit his neck. Features formed for a moment on his face. A flash of a nose, sharp and regal. A sliver of a chin, fox narrow. One eye, startled and wide, blinked for a moment. “I do not!” I howled. “I do not! I do not! I do not!” Slowly, calm came back. Air filled my lungs. My belly twisted with regret and the need to feel no regret. “I’m dying,” I said. “Yes.” “I don’t want to die.” “No one wants to die,” he said. I found a corner and sunk into it. The room spun around me. “This is what life is,” Gid said. “Want and pain and then death.” “Jesus.” He went away. I still wanted to hit things. I wanted to break the world into manageable pieces and chew them up. I wanted to swallow the light and live forever.

Making Sure Posters of smiling women and children broke the walls up into pale blocks. Magazines filled with stories about families lay on the coffee tables. An old woman sat at the receptionist table and asked my name. “Butter,” I said, and she checked her computer. A woman with a baby sat in the corner looking too poor to support a child. Some kind of light music played, just barely loud enough to hear. “The doctor will be with you soon,” the old woman said. I sat on the loveseat and waited. I wanted a cigarette. I wanted to pretend this wasn’t happening. Voices whispered at me. I couldn’t make out words, but the sound ate my nerves. I waited and watched the faces in the posters writhe and wrinkle. This was not a good day. Part of me wanted Tayla to be here. Part of me was glad she wasn’t. I had to get through this. I had to know what the next step was before talking to her. They called me back. The hall was short. The walls were too pale. Open doors showed rooms with exam tables and clean tile counters. My room was at the end. The nurse took my vitals and chatted about something. I couldn’t concentrate. After she left, I lay on the exam table and drew lines from one point on the ceiling to another. I waited, and I felt sick. My head buzzed, and the room seemed to twist on itself. Minutes passed. I came close to leaving, but then the doctor came. “My name’s Angel,” she said. “Butter.” “What can I do for you?” I told her about the baby but not about Gid. I told her I was scared and didn’t know what to do. She never blinked. She never frowned. She gave me a list of options. I could abort. I could put